Horne welcomes new players to 7s

2015-07-09 08:47
Frankie Horne (AFP)

Cape Town - Springbok Sevens veteran Frankie Horne says the 15-man game specialists who want to put up their hand for sevens selection ahead of the 2016 Olympic Games will be welcomed.

There’s plenty of excitement ahead of sevens rugby’s Olympic debut in Rio de Janeiro in 2015.

It has already been reported that the likes of New Zealand stars Sonny Bill Williams and Liam Messam will make themselves available for sevens selection during the 2015/16 World Series campaign.

More big rugby names in other countries are expected to be announced in the near future too.

Last year, the Blitzboks hosted the likes of Bryan Habana, Schalk Brits and JJ Engelbrecht at their headquarters in Stellenbosch.

Horne said the national sevens players will always be open to welcoming more rugby talent to the group as they hope to build the strongest possible squad for the Olympics.

“We will always welcome new players who believe they can add value,” Horne told

“It’s an exciting time for sevens rugby, which has grown so much in recent years. This has given rugby players the opportunity to be part of the biggest sports event in the world - the Olympic Games.

“I wasn’t surprised to hear about Liam Messam and Sonny Bill Williams wanting to play sevens rugby for New Zealand. The top nations will all ensure the best players are available for selection, including South Africa.

“From a South African perspective, the players will need to make the sacrifice and dedicate time to the code. The requirements state that each player needs to play at least two World Series tournaments to qualify for Olympic selection. So the players who want to be involved will need to make the effort.”

Horne added that the success of several South Africans in both 15s and sevens rugby prove that dual-code players can make an impact.

“Guys like Warren Whiteley, Kwagga Smith, Seabelo Senatla, Cheslin Kolbe and Cornal Hendricks have excelled in sevens and 15s rugby, which is not easy,” said Horne. “They have proven that some players can add value in both codes, and they’ll be exciting talents to watch over the next year heading into the Olympics.

“It must be noted that it’s easier to move from sevens to 15s, but it’s really difficult to adapt from 15s to sevens, especially without prior experience. So the guys who want to cross codes need to be patient and dedicate time to learning more about sevens rugby. We are here to help them too.”


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Read more on:    frankie horne  |  sevens  |  rugby


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